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How Maestro Uses Technology to Perform Beautifully

On a daily basis, we promise our clients we can help them “Perform Beautifully.” Being technologists at heart, we get to see, experiment and use technology day-in-and-day-out. All the technology we use is meant to complement, enhance and make us more efficient, thus being able to perform beautifully ourselves.

Yet, we realized we weren’t performing beautifully, or even optimally. Part of the reason was that we had project data scattered across no fewer than ten tools.

Yikes!

We had separate tools for tracking, time, project financials, project communication, client communications, project planning, bug tracking, personal to-do lists and the list goes on and on.

So we did more than a little soul searching to understand where the gaps were in our performance and what we could do.

Maestro's Technology Stack

Our technology stack, while full of beautiful tools, was not efficient for our needs and goals.

With all of the different tools informing what any given person was working on, there wasn’t any holistic visibility into projects.

Because of this, there was an opportunity to build greater satisfaction with the tools we provided our team members.

So we did our due diligence on figuring out where the gaps were and what we could do to solve them. Through research, optimizations and surveying the current team we learned what was liked, disliked and loved by our internal team.

58% of our team members rated their satisfaction with our current toolset a two or three on a scale of one to five (five being completely satisfied). Not great scores when we use this technology everyday!

The only exception to this score was Slack. Everyone loves Slack.

Everyone said they loved Slack for communicating. The only trick to this? We love Slack so much that we tend to gravitate towards it situations where it doesn’t make the most sense to use it. Such as trying to record historical information for projects. It’s much more efficient to use as a stream of consciousness and quick communication.

How We Selected the Right Tool to Perform Beautifully

The vision for selecting the right tool was to allow designers and developers, and the whole team, to focus on what they do best. Not go hunting for information and try to keep track of multiple projects and deliverables.

How Many Systems Did We Test Out?

We evaluated 65 project management and team collaboration tools, trialled 42, analyzed 10, piloted 3 and selected 1.

What Were the Requirements of Any System We Selected?

We needed a system that would be able to track project plans and financials, time tracking for employees, project requirements, resource planning, client communication and project file storage.

After all of our research, we selected Mavenlink as our go-to project management tool.

Mavenlink answered our need for all our requirements and took our technology stack from five separate systems to one.

How Did the Transition Go?

Change is never easy. For anyone. So we laid a few exceptions to help everyone through the transition. We wanted them to:

  • Know that the change will not feel easy or natural for a little bit
  • Understand we’re rethinking and resetting expectations for how we work
  • Expect turbulence, but assume positive intent

We also met with each team individually to share news of the transition and how it would affect their team and workflow.

From there we integrated Mavenlink with the tools we already used and loved the most: Slack and Google Drive.

With those three expectations shared upfront, and connecting with teams individually, the transition to Mavenlink was smooth.

Change Management and Rollout Plan

After a careful evaluation and selection process, a rollout plan was developed with strategic dates to make the transition as smooth as possible with as few disruptions to current projects as possible. Below is a snapshot of our pre, during, and post launch strategy:



What You Can Learn From Us

We by no means think we have all the answers. Afterall, we stand firm in the idea that humility makes us all teachable, but we can confidently share the following advice with you as you look to evaluate, modify, or completely change your technology stack:

  • Outline what your specific needs are for any piece of your technology stack
  • Honestly, evaluate where your current technology stacks line up against those needs
  • Research the tools that have the potential to meet those needs
  • Be transparent with your team about the change
  • Be proactive and positive when rolling out your change management plan
  • Re-evaluate after a few months to check that the technology is still relevant

Keep the above points in mind for evaluating any new piece of technology, and you and your team will be on your way to performing beautifully.

Want to Learn How You Can Perform Beautifully?

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